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Top 8 Weight Loss Myths – Debunked!

Top 8 Weight Loss Myths – Debunked!

Perhaps you’ve been struggling to lose the extra pounds you packed on during the holidays. Or maybe successful weight loss has eluded you for years. However, don’t lose hope. It is possible that he is doing things the wrong way.

After all, there are plenty of fad diets and myths out there, and some of them sound downright sensible. If you follow the hype, you will jump from crazy diet plans to weight loss supplements and back again, all without any real results to show for your effort.

Honestly, it can be hard to separate fact from fiction in the world of dieting. In this article, we are going to take some of the mystery out of diet and weight loss. We’ll discuss some of the most prevalent dietary myths out there and give you some solid facts to blow those fallacies out of the water.

Myth #1: You should eat “fat burning” foods like celery, cabbage soup, and grapefruit.

The facts: This myth has led to all kinds of crazy diet plans, including the “Master Cleanse,” the cabbage soup diet, and the grapefruit diet. People have gone all out, eating little more than cabbage or grapefruit soup (supplemented with a few leftovers of lean protein). Ultimately, the results are inconsistent and never permanent.

The verdict: There is no such thing as a “fat burning” food. Certain foods will temporarily boost your metabolism (including celery and grapefruit); however, they do not cause weight loss on their own.

Myth #2: Eliminate starches because they make you fat.

The facts: Most starches are low in fat and calories. Bread, potatoes, rice, pasta, cereals, and beans are foods that are low in calories and fat. Sure, if you spread your potatoes with cream cheese and your bread with butter or mayonnaise, then of course they’re fattening. However, natural and whole grain starches are an important part of a healthy diet. They provide the fuel your body needs for energy, so cutting them out is a bad idea.

The verdict: A few servings of starchy foods are an important part of your diet, even when you’re trying to lose weight. Just stick to whole grains, potatoes, and beans, and avoid adding fatty dressings or spreads.

Myth #3: High protein, low carb diets are a good way to lose weight

The facts: Stay away from any diet plan that suggests cutting key elements out of the diet. When you eat less than 130 grams of carbohydrates a day, your blood builds up high levels of ketones. This leads to high uric acid levels, which can ultimately lead to gout and kidney stones.

Plus, when you cut out carbs, most of your daily calories end up coming from protein-rich foods. Since these diet plans give you a free kidney to eat red meat, cheese, and other high-fat proteins, you may end up eating too much fat and cholesterol, which can increase your risk of heart disease.

The verdict: A high-protein, low-carb diet can lead to temporary weight loss; however, it is just that: temporary. Plan your diet around a healthy balance of foods, including plenty of whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.

Myth #4: Over-the-counter weight loss supplements are a safe and effective way to lose weight.

The facts: Since dietary supplements aren’t technically “medicine,” they’re not subject to the rigorous standards other drugs face. We assume that because it is on the shelf at our trusted local pharmacy, it must be safe to use. Unfortunately, many diet pills hit the market without being tested or approved by the FDA. Occasionally, if a product is seriously defective or dangerous, the FDA will issue a warning; however, for the most part, the industry is unregulated.

When you read “unregulated” that also means that there is no proof that these supplements are effective. Heavy sales blurbs and persuasive before-and-after photos may be hiding nothing more than an expensive placebo.

The verdict: Just because you can find it at your local pharmacy doesn’t mean it’s safe or effective. There is simply no pill or powder that can replace a healthy diet and exercise program. A supplement could speed up the process; but almost every diet pill out there has some kind of nasty side effect.

Myth #5: Fad diets are a good way to kick-start my weight loss goals.

The Facts: While you may be aware of the long-term ineffectiveness of fad diets, you may be tempted to start your diet with a “grapefruit cleanse” or “cabbage soup fast.” After all, these diets usually promise fast and impressive results. And the fact is that many of them can help you lose five or ten pounds in a week.

However, such rapid weight loss can be dangerous and may increase your risk of gallstones. Also, eating fewer than 800 calories a day can cause heart rhythm abnormalities, which can be fatal in some cases.

The verdict: Fad diets, even short-term ones, simply don’t provide the nutrition your body needs to sustain itself. Starving your body of fuel and nutrients will ultimately end up doing more harm than good.

Myth #6: Low-fat or fat-free foods are a great way to eat what I want and still lose weight.

The facts: Low-fat or fat-free foods may be low in fat, but they are usually high in calories. When fat is removed from a product, something else must be added to maintain the same flavor and consistency. Often a low-fat product is loaded with sugar, flour, or starchy thickeners, and these ingredients pack on the calories.

The verdict: A low-fat product is not an excuse to go crazy, and it certainly won’t help you lose weight. Read product labels for calorie information and stick to small serving sizes.

Myth #7: Skipping meals is a quick and easy way to lose weight.

The facts: Interestingly, studies have shown that people who skip meals, particularly breakfast, tend to gain more weight overall. The reason: When you skip one meal, you’re hungry for the next one, and you end up eating more than you should or else. So instead of losing weight, your waist just expands.

The verdict: don’t skip meals. In fact, four or five small, healthy meals a day can be better than three regular meals. Eating regularly helps you control your appetite and avoid unhealthy snacks.

Myth #8: You don’t need to diet if you exercise a lot.

The facts: You’ll only lose weight when you’re burning off enough of what you’ve consumed. You can exercise for an hour a day, but if you fill your gut three times a day with high-fat, high-calorie foods, don’t expect to see any progress.

The verdict: Diet and exercise go hand in hand when weight loss is your goal. You can’t have one without the other, so eat a healthy, balanced diet and get regular vigorous exercise.

Remember: the most important part of losing weight is sticking with your eating plans. You can’t be sporadic about it or you won’t see sustained results. However, if you follow a healthy eating plan and exercise faithfully, you’ll see those unwanted pounds begin to melt away for good.

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